There are few things that can match the experience of getting lost in your first book.
Faithful readers of this blog (hi Mom) may remember a while back, we spent some time with the non-profit in Laos called Big Brother Mouse. This is an organization dedicated to improving literacy throughout the country. Their focus is on writing and printing books in Lao, getting them into the hands of kids, and giving them the gift of reading.
If that wasn’t enough, they also encourage tourists to come to their offices to practice English with anyone who wants to learn. We had a great time volunteering here several times while in Luang Prubang, and helping school students, adults in the tourism field, and monks with their English.
We were lucky enough to be a part of delivering books to a rural area outside of Phonsavan in central Laos as well, and seeing the excitement on the faces of kids receiving their first books left a big impression on us.
After we returned to the US, we were fortunate enough to have our own gallery show and exhibit some of the photos from our trip. Incredibly, we sold quite a few, and decided to donate the profits to Big Brother Mouse.
True, we could have donated directly to the website but it just so happened that our awesome friends Ali and Ben were off on a 1 of 7 style volunteering trip of their own, and were passing through Laos. They were more than willing to help us remotely sponsor a book party.
A big thanks to Ali and Ben (seen above, front row) for trekking an hour outside of Luang Prabang to make the delivery. And there was literally trekking involved.. Ali carried a box of books for quite a long way down a dirt trail. in the sweaty heat, but it was worth it!